What does it take to help animals that will die because they have no home? Just a few knowledgeable, dedicated and undeterred people at No Kill Advocacy Center who teach others across the nation how shelters should operate and turn them from high kill to high save.

This flyer illustrates the fight to help animals
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A post World War 11 style flyer illustrates a different kind of fight started by the No Kill Advocacy Center

A shelter or pound that kills to reduce the pet population is committing animal abuse and supporters of this pioneering non-profit, founded in 2004, are fighting for change and a cruelty free environment in every sense of the word.

Many shelters still routinely destroy 90% or more of all the animals they take in. Although there is no legal definition of a no kill shelter, in animal rights circles it is one that has a save rate of 90% or higher. And these facilities only use the term “euthanize” for its true meaning…ending the life of an animal that is suffering, sick beyond medical help, or has serious behavior issues and cannot be rehabilitated.


The policy of Trap Neuter Return is the only humane way to protect feral cat colonies

Feral cat colony find shelter near a train wagon left for scrap

We have been killing animals for decades, for over a century, actually. Why? Because people believed the myth that saving them would result in costly, unmanageable over population. And because no-one ever thought outside the box and proposed humane alternatives to help animals. So let’s review some facts, the true animal rights facts.

Approximately eight million animals enter a pet shelter every year in the USA.

  • Some will be adopted
  • Unsocialized (feral) cats will be neutered and returned to their outdoor environment
  • Some will be reclaimed by their owner
  • Others will go to rescue groups
  • Others will be suffering or are sick beyond medical help

Around four million cats and dogs will be killed in pounds and shelters this year.

  • Three million of these will die for lack of a home

It is heartbreaking to see helpless kittens

Who knows how long these bonded kittens will survive on their own


Is it possible to find homes for three million cats and dogs this year? YES! Here's how to help animals.

Roughly 23 million people will get a pet next year.

  • Some already know they will adopt from a shelter
  • Some are committed to purchasing a pet from a humane breeder while some will choose another commercial source
  • Around 17 million people have not yet decided where they will go to acquire their wanted pet

Homeless dogs need our help wherever they may be

Finding loving homes for homeless animals is a global concern

Three million adoptable pets will be waiting to be adopted by 17 million potential new pet owners.

  • If 80% of those 17 million people got their pets from somewhere other than a shelter, 3 million cats and dogs would be adopted, not killed needlessly.


When this page was first published, the No Kill Advocacy Center informed us that over 160 communities representing more than 400 cities and towns had achieved save rates of between 90% and 99%. Today (August 2015), there are over 500 No Kill communities, and the good news is that more and more are joining the ranks every single month.

How did they do it?
By implementing the following actions:

Rescue organizations help animals following a natural disaster

Animal rescue takes many forms, here after a natural disaster

  • Having a competent, compassionate staff and terminating the employment of those who were not
  • Having on-site adoption during hours when people are off work, especially at weekends and on public holidays
  • Reaching out to rescue groups
  • Building a network of people willing to foster
  • Holding adoption events
  • Recruiting volunteers
  • Social media exposure


- Austin, TX. A pregnant Labrador that would otherwise have been defined as unadoptable and put straight onto the kill list was given the chance to carry to term. She and her nine puppies were all adopted.
- Indiana. When an animal control stayed open for the first time on the 4th of July, they reached 153 adoptions that day.
- Reno, NV. At the time of implementing new policies, only 3 of the 60-member staff remained. The rest were new-hire, and the result was a 94% community-wide save rate.


Nathan Winograd, the founder of NKAC, repeatedly tells local citizens how they can band together and demand change. “These are your shelters, they are paid for with your tax and philanthropic dollars and they do what they do in your name. If they do not reflect your values, you need to engage in the kind of political, legal and legislative advocacy to force them to do so.”


The No Kill Advocacy Center has written free guides, such as We Can Do It! Adopt Your Way Out of Killing and No Kill Advocate's Toolkit, created posters, produced a feature-length documentary and organized the annual No Kill Conference, all made possible with the help of its partners and donations.

Innocent yet behind bars

A life behind bars is no life for an innocent pup

All he wants is a home!

The sight of an abandoned pup is heartbreaking

It provides the tools to make change happen, in a country where no kill shelters will no longer be the exception but the norm.


Because too few shelters were voluntarily adopting humane practices, the No Kill Advocacy Center wrote the Companion Animal Protection Act. This model shelter reform legislation mandates how a shelter must operate and establishes the shelter’s primary role as saving lives of animals and upholding an animal’s right to live and to be free of suffering.

Versions of CAPA have already passed in Florida, Illinois, Minnesota, New York, Rhode Island, Texas and West Virginia, and more states are expected to follow suit.

Of course, passing legislation is one thing: enforcing it is another!        


To read about other highly informative topics that No Kill Advocacy Center is directly involved in, as well as more topics dealing with how to help animals, please check out the links below.

Saving Homeless Pets - Just One Day

No Kill Animal Shelters - No Kill Conference

Puppy Mill Dogs

Factory Farming

Return to Home page from Help Animals

Small doggy lookalike glass pendant, a unique dog breed gift
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Dog breed pendant to benefit No Kill Advocacy Center, shown on a silver chain.

Large doggy lookalike glass pendant, a unique dog breed gift

Pendant depicting several breeds to benefit No Kill Advocacy Center, hangs from a silver chain.

Chocolate colored Kitty Tail glass pendant to benefit No Kill Advocacy Center, hangs from a silver chain.

Bright red Dog Paw Print pendant to benefit No Kill Advocacy Center, shown on a silver chain.

nd pendant post

We wanted to share some information with you about a different, fun, really “cool” way to treat your dog by giving it these refreshing treats.

As you may know, California is typically at the forefront when it comes to holistic pet food and that is exactly where Freezy Pups is based. 

You simply add water to a packet of cheese, chicken, apple or sweet potato mix, pour into a special, bone-shaped, starter kit ice tray and freeze. Melt a couple of cubes and pour over dry food to add flavor. Or, some K9s will love to play with the cube and lick it till it’s gone!

The human-grade ingredients are preservative free; wheat, corn, soy and gluten free; have no artificial colors or flavors; are made in the USA; and even the tray is US-made. Go visit https://www.freezy and see for yourself!